Happy November Everyone,
I hope you have all enjoyed a fun bonfire night yesterday.
I am so happy to introduce this wonderful new app to you all. Ever since coming back to Sheffield in September I have been seeking out new, exciting blogging opportunities.
The Tab Sheffield shared an interesting post about a new app coming to Sheffield focusing on all of the wonderful, independent businesses dotted around the city. I went over to their website and found an email for Kurtis the founder of Loci Pay and contacted him.
He was really keen to meet me for a chat about the app and tell me more so I can tell you all more about it. I respect Kurtis so much for being pro-active and going for this new exciting career. It takes a lot of guts to be able to ‘go for it’ and put your idea into action.
Kurtis is the founder of LociPay and is on a strong mission as part of the Sheffield Community Technologies project. The aim of Sheffield Community Technologies is to launch a new technology platform every 12 months.
In 2017 – They launched Sheffield Business Services. A business focused platform aimed on cost reduction & service management.
In 2018 – They will be launching LociPay.
Then in the future around July – August time 2018 they will conduct some market research and look at what can be developed next.
Starting up a business
One of the main reasons I really wanted to meet with Kurtis is that he has started up this business all by himself which is something I highly respect. He went from being a corporate banker working within the business & finance services sector for around 13 years. He was working over in the Middle East for an international bank, assisting large multinational corporation., He wanted a change and decided to move back to Sheffield and put an idea into practice. He felt like it was the perfect opportunity to try something new and start up his own business.
Kurtis has always been very passionate about supporting local independent businesses after working for large corporate banks for so many years. Just like Kurtis, I much prefer to be able to spend my money locally knowing I’m making an impact on someones own business and not donating to large corporate companies that avoid tax (not naming any names…)
One amazing thing that Kurtis said to me which he needs to mention everywhere to market himself was:
I walked into the HSBC offices in Sheffield 11 years ago to start my career with them. I now work back in that same building (HSBC have since moved out). However, it’s for my own socially motivated Financial Technology company.
There was just something about that statement I thought to be really iconic in starting up your own business.
I asked him what his first moves were in creating this new business?
The overall thought is that you have to be really dedicated to the idea. It can’t just become a hobby it takes a lot of effort, and substantial amounts of time and money.
You also need to have that inner push to get your name and ideas out there. You need to be very pro-active telling friends, family and businesses about what you are doing. Completely throw away that sense of embarrassment or shyness.
You are the story & drive behind the business, so you need to engage with as many people as possible to get the message out.
The LociPay app:
One thing to mention when coming up with an idea is that sometimes it doesn’t work right away. Kurtis told me that the LociPay originated as an idea called the Sheffield Pound but after doing some thorough market research he needed to do more work.
20 students from Sheffield Hallam University undertook a social innovation study and realised how prominent the student population is in Sheffield. It seemed like the perfect idea to advertise and market something towards this market. I, being a student of course am fully on board with this idea and hence why I wanted to tell you all about it.
The underlying mission of the app is all about ‘financial health’ they are going to have an inbuilt savings feature where you are able to round-up each transaction. This helps to save up the small change and over a year this can help people to save a significant amount of money in such an easy way. It is also helping to reduce costs for businesses cutting the % of credit card charges they would be paying for each transaction down to just 1% through the LociPay App.
It is such an incredible idea for both consumers and local businesses. There are also some other really cool features:
- You can create your own personalised profile to fit in with your interests.
- Through ‘push notifications’ it can notify you of any special offers going on over a limited time (countdown clock for the deals).
- Helps to get customers to go to local businesses through their quite periods through the special offer notification feature.
- Helps get local businesses more well-known through geo-mapping show all the businesses involved on the app.
- Keeps the money local as through the app money will spent in the local businesses.
The biggest benefit and feature of all is not only will you be supporting the cafe’s, restaurant and shops involved but you will be supporting the app itself. Kurtis and his team have worked so hard to get this app up and going. Kurtis could not tell me what businesses are involved due to the marketing campaign that will be coming up but some of my favourite places in Sheffield that I think would really benefit include: Steam Yard, Marmadukes, Bungalows & Bears and the Kelham Arcade area.
It sounds like such a wonderful idea and having it as an app is very clever as we all use our contactless payments, I use my phone all the time to pay for things. It is also very secure as you pay within the app, most people use either their fingerprint/passcode to open up their phones and you will also have a passcode to enter the app. Through this 2-step authentication helps your payments to be fully secure.
What can you do to help?
I would love you guys to head over to their social media channels follow them. Show your support and spread the word. Psst…tell them @bookitblogger sent you!
Make sure you all head to their website and sign up, you will then be notified as the BETA version of the app as soon as it is released. Kurtis hopes that starting off the app in Sheffield and spreading the word making it popular it can then very soon expand to other places across Sheffield City Region and the UK.
I hope you guys enjoyed this post and let me know in the comments what you think of this app and if you’re inspired by Kurtis’ story starting up his own business.
Is starting up your own business something you inspire to do or have you maybe already done it?
Spread this blog post around your friends and family I really want to show Kurtis that we can all show our support to this amazing idea.
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Thank you for reading,